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PHI@NYM: Byrd breaks tie with RBI double in the 11th

NEW YORK -- At this point, the Phillies will accept any type of victory, even if the process is more excruciating than pleasant. The Phillies entered Citi Field on Friday night as a slumping team looking for answers to a plethora of issues, and they didn't find many against the Mets.

They did, however, commit fewer mistakes than they did in their previous four games. And they were able to finally produce a clutch hit -- even if it took them until the 11th inning.

Former Met Marlon Byrd was able to slice a double just inside the right-field line to score Chase Utley, and it was just enough to give the Phillies a much-needed 3-2 win in 11 innings. The game, highlighted by plenty of scoring chances being squandered, took more than four hours.

The victory also snapped the Phillies' four-game losing streak after being swept by the Blue Jays.

"Regardless of what's been going on, early in the season or the last series, you got to keep grinding," said Bryd, who played for the Mets in 2013 and struck out three times before his double. "I was just excited I was able to get the job done."

Domonic Brown provided the other two runs. Brown drove in Utley twice with two singles to left field in the third and fifth innings. Utley was the most productive player at the plate, as he led the team with three hits and all three runs scored.

"Chase Utley was right in the middle of everything," manager Ryne Sandberg said. "He had a big night along with Brownie, with his two RBIs."

The Phillies, though, were far from perfect. The victory was not a product of smooth defense, efficient pitching and strong hitting. The Phillies more or less endured and outlasted the Mets, who also did not have their best offensive performance.

Throughout the game, the inefficiencies that have plagued the Phillies this season, especially on offense, lingered, which kept the Mets in the game. Many Phillies runners -- 17 total -- were left stranded. The Phils struck out 12 times and had just three extra-base hits, two of which were doubles by Utley. In Thursday's loss to the Blue Jays, the Phillies left 15 runners on base.

"You always think positively," Utley said. "You're going to have days where you strand that many guys. To get a big win late in the game is always a good confidence builder."

The Mets, who were just as inept in the batter's box, left 15 runners on base.

Despite the low scoring, starting pitcher Roberto Hernandez, along with Mets starter Jenrry Mejia, allowed the game to have plenty of action. Hernandez threw 30 pitches in the first inning. Yet he was able to limit the Mets to one run, which came on a double by Curtis Granderson to right field.

Between the two pitchers, the game did not exactly turn out to be a duel. Instead, it became a contest to see who could survive the longest for their respective bullpens. After the first two innings, Hernandez and Mejia had each escaped out of bases-loaded jams.

Hernandez went further in the game, pitching five innings and allowing only one run on six hits.

Sandberg gambled in the fifth inning when he called for Utley to steal second base with Brown at the plate with a 3-0 count. The strategy worked. Utley was safe at second -- his first stolen base of the season -- and Brown drove him home with a single to left field to give the Phillies a 2-1 lead.

Sandberg next planned to use a reliever for each of the remaining innings. The hope was to have closer Jonathan Papelbon pitch with the lead in the ninth. However, where Jake Diekman and Mike Adams succeeded in their innings of work, Antonio Bastardo did not.

He left a fastball over the plate to David Wright, who doubled to left to score Daniel Murphy with the tying run in the eighth inning. It was the only hit Bastardo allowed in his two innings pitched.

The Phillies seemed to be headed for another agonizing loss. But unlike the last few games, they recovered and Sandberg was eventually able to get the ball to Papelbon.

Inside the Phillies' clubhouse, Byrd smiled as he talked about his only hit of the game. Sandberg was just happy it ended the Phillies' losing streak.

"He battled," Sandberg said. "That was big. That was the one. Otherwise we'd still be out there."

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